QUHOMA is a QUalitative HOrticulture MArketplace developed by Future Intelligence (FINT). FINT is the only Internet Of Things hardware manufacturer in Greece and a unique SmartCity enabler. On top of their in-house equipment, they currently offer user-friendly, end-to-end ser-vices and applications for Intelligent Outdoor Lighting Management. The company was founded in 2009, in Athens, and its core business lines include long-range communications (WiMAX) and additional cus-tomized Telecom Engineering advanced services.
What is the core idea of QUHOMA – QUalitative HOrticulture MArketplace by FINT?
The core idea is exploiting Greece’s and Europe’s excellent potential for qualitative farming products. Due to the continent’s landscape and historical context, agriculture mainly targets small-scale, family-run businesses that do not have the potential to compete on price differentiation, worldwide. However, especially for the Greek case and sun, FINT aims to efficiently contribute to local agrifood outstanding quality through the support of cutting-edge technology and strengthen products’ market positioning in the worldwide premium category. Apart from the technology-oriented innovations, the business context is profoundly innovative. Stakeholders with common interests (farmers, agronomists, quality Certification Bodies) are now sitting around the same table (QUHOMA) and through the usage of technology equipment they can now reduce, share and optimize their costs and resources (business-wise synergies) through win-win models.
Could you tell us something more about your innovative solution?
The proposed solution envisions a qualitative marketplace for the agrifood domain. Putting the data right at the centre of such an ecosystem of services, classifying them accordingly, algorithmically manipulating them and diffusing them to the right players, gives great poten-tial for invaluable data-value extraction and stakeholders’ intelligence augmentation.
The proposed sensor network uses a three-tier architecture that enables great operational flexibility and scalability potential. Due to the usage of standardised network software layer, transducer technology and web compatible interfaces and their planned interoperability with FIWARE software components and Cloud-based infrastructure the system is capable of interconnecting hundreds of sensors for every Network Routing and Deployment device* and easily scaling up to thousands of them for addressing the most demanding scenario in open fields.
What challenges have inspired the idea for QUHOMA – QUalitative HOrticulture MArketplace?
There are many areas that provoke skepticism in the agriculture domain as expressed below. High unemployment and unexploited lands: Can technology make farming seems luring for youngsters? Technology for the masses: Can we build helpful technology for people currently under-served and will the digital divide ever diminish? Let us actively cater for our children’s health: Can we make quality agri-products cheaper and more con-veniently consumed comparing to the GMOs that now seem unbeatable?
Technology does more with less. Is there a way to build an intelligent, value-added, production-oriented economy rather that a purely service-based one?
It is hard to persuade farmers buy and install such equipment (costs, complexity, lack of tangible bene-fits) at his premises. Because of that, the respective value chain loses its traceability potential. What is the limit of knowledge sharing agriculture economy? Does it stop at the farm or does it continue to the supply chain, retail and finally up until the family table?
How is your experience with FIWARE so fare?
We love IoT Broker and the whole IoT Chapter because it enables FINoT integration with FIWARE! In general, since FINT creates a marketplace we also use all GEs in the FIWARE Business Framework, the User Interface Frameworks (Data Visualization+MashUp) and the Context Framework.
We also think to use FIspace in the future and as long as it is ready and stable. We have participated in the webinars and already share our interest with the FIspace Greek contributors.
How do you imagine your project in the coming years?
Absolutely up and running, sustainable and hopefully to more than one market! In addition, it might have encapsulated further automation operations (irrigation system) or extent its operations beyond farming (eg transportation and supply chain).
In terms of business scalability and growth potential the success of the platform will be defined by its horizontal diffusion in each one actor’s business positions in intelligent process monitoring and control for agrifood quality value chain. Most importantly, the real growth potential of QUHOMA – QUalitative HOrticulture MArketplace will be unveiled when a critical mass of farmers will be achieved and the platform operates under adequate profit margins. Then, its openness to end-customers/consumers is projected along with invitation of intelligent perishable transportation partners operating under real-time auction mechanisms in order to farmers/customers getting the most competitive and convenient delivery option as well as fulfilling an end-to-end- from farm to fork- traceability.
Our business partner, TUV AUSTRIA HELLAS, is the best player in quality certifications (BIO, GLOBAL GAP) for the agriculture domain in Greece. Apart from that, the fact that holds its own branches in more than one external markets increase the commercial potential of QUHOMA.
Curious about QUHOMA – QUalitative HOrticulture MArketplace by FINT?
Future Intelligence EPE (Athens, Greece)
Business-to-business collaboration Connectivity and/or standardisation services Consultancy services Creating the services based on Open Data Data management Food production Information on food quality and safety issues Process organization, monitoring and tracking Product information for companies and consumers Product transparency and compliance Production and distribution in a local and regional context Promote the awareness with respect to health & related risks Reduce the environmental impact Traceability